Darryl Wills, of Deer Park, Texas, was declared the 2010 Formula Mazda National Champion and Super Sweep winner following Juan Marchand's disqualification in Sunday's race at the 47th SCCA National Championship Runoffs Presented by Subway. Mike Anderson, of Anza, Calif., and Jason Vinkemulder, of Spring Lake, Mich., completed the revised top three.
Wills started fourth in his No. 02 Hillenburg Motorsports Star Formula Mazda and initially crossed the finish line second to Marchand.
Marchand started from the back of the field in his No. 1 JRM at Gingerman/Goodyear/ MAZDASPEED Star Formula Mazda after showing up late to the grid, and had to work his way through the full field. That included tracking down a lead group of Doug Peterson, who moved from third on the grid to the lead at the green flag, Gumout Polesitter Jason Vinkemulder, Wills and Anderson.
The lead group had separated themselves from the field and were in a four-way battle for the point through the early stages of the race, with Peterson, of Bonita Springs, Fla., opening up a small gap in his No. 87 3Dimensional.com Star Formula Mazda.
The field was bunched up again on lap four after a red-flag period temporarily stopped the race for clean-up of a three-car incident in Turn Five that sent the No. 0 Dunes Marketing Group Formula Mazda of W. Baldwin, of Hilton Head, S.C., upside down. Baldwin was examined and released from the track medical center.
The caution allowed Marchand to close onto the rear of that lead battle and wasted no time joining the fight. Marchand crossed the finish line on lap seven in third, and with one lap to go in the shortened race, moved to second past Vinkemulder.
When Peterson's No.87 Formula Mazda lost power suddenly on the ninth and final lap, Marchand was in the lead and cruised to the checkered flag. Following the post-race technical inspection, it was found that Marchand's car did not have a compliant RPM limiter. His disqualification promoted Wills, who crossed the line second, to the Championship.
Wills finished 0.484-second ahead of Anderson's No. 42 HASA Pool Products Star Formula Mazda, averaging 53.395 mph in the shortened, nine-lap, 36-mile race.
Wills' day almost ended when Peterson's did, as he had to take evasive action to miss the slowing car and ran wide and into the grass. Wills turned the race's fast lap with a time of 2:17.020 (105.094 mph) to set a new SCCA Runoffs Formula Mazda race record.
"I started fourth had Jason right in front of me," Wills recalled. "He was driving a good line and had good tires. After the red, we went down the front straightaway three-wide. It was a good, clean race. There are no tire marks on my car - not a one. I can't believe it."
Anderson was pleased with the way his race went to the (eventual) runner-up finish.
"I've done a lot of Formula Mazda races and this was by far the best race," Anderson said. "You could have thrown a blanket over the top five guys and it was like one little mistake and you're in fifth. Or you will get some guys drafting by. It really shows the competitiveness of the class.
"The best race was with Darryl. Several corners, we were side-by-side."
Vinkemulder finished third in the No. 10 Vinkemulder Financial/Lake Effect Star Formula Mazda. Jamie Sloan, of Tucson, Ariz., inherited fourth in the No. 6 GoPro/Inside Track Star Formula Mazda after Peterson's difficulties sent him to 11th.
James Harrelson, of Owens Cross Roads, Ala., completed the top five in his No. 25 Hoosier Racing Tires Star Formula Mazda, earning the Sunoco Hard Charger for advancing 11 positions in the race.
Samuel Ryan, Kenneth De Nault, Russell Hillenburg, Mark Greb and Jack DeBraal all finished in the top 10.
Now in its 47th year, the SCCA National Championship Runoffs Presented by Subway annually crowns Champions in the Sports Car Club of America's Club Racing classes. The live broadcast of all 28 National Championship races will be available throughout the weekend at www.Speedcasttv.com/scca and later available On Demand from the same site.
Follow the action on Twitter @SCCAOfficial or the SCCA, Inc. Official Facebook page at facebook.com/sccaofficial.
ELKHART LAKE, Wis. - Provisional Results from Sunday's Formula Mazda National Championship Race, part of the 47th SCCA National Championship Runoffs at Road America with finish position, starting position in parenthesis, driver, hometown, car and laps complete.
1, (4), Darryl Wills, Deer Park, TX, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
2, (2), Mike Anderson, Anza, CA, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
3, (1), Jason Vinkemulder, Spring Lake, MI, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
4, (9), Jamie Slone, Tucson, AZ, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
5, (16), James Harrelson, Owens Cross Roads, AL, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
6, (17), Samuel M Ryan, White Haven, PA, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
7, (8), Kenneth De Nault, Cedar Falls, IA, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
8, (14), Russell Hillenburg, Friendswood, TX, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
9, (0), Mark M Greb, Mount Vernon, IA, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
10, (18), Jack DeBraal, Plymouth, WI, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
11, (3), Doug Peterson, Bonita Springs, FL, Star Formula Mazda, 8.
12, (13), Melvin Kemper, Toledo, WA, Star Formula Mazda, 8.
13, (5), Brian Julien, Waukesha, WI, Star Formula Mazda, 5.
DNF, (12), Rodney Jessen, Bellevue, WA, Star Formula Mazda, 3.
DNF, (0), W. Baldwin, Hilton Head Island, SC, Star Formula Mazda, 3.
DNF, (11), Dale Vandenbush, Green Bay, WI, Star Formula Mazda, 3.
DNF, (15), Fabio Castellani, Streamwood, IL, Star Formula Mazda, 1.
DQ, (6), Juan Marchand, South Haven, MI, Star Formula Mazda, 9.
Time of Race: 40:25.945
Winner's average speed: 53.422 mph
Fastest race lap: #02 Darryl Wills, 2:17.020 (105.094 mph)
Lap Leaders: 1-8, #87 Doug Peterson; 9, #1 Juan Marchand
Sunoco Hard Charger: #25 James Harrelson
Cautions: 1 for 1 lap
Attached: Image of Darryl Wills (No. 02) leading the pack at Road America
Credit: Shaun Lumley Image